The Surface is apparently not very good. Demand for Windows 8 is apparently weak. Apparently it has a 2-week learning curve. But I’ll be damned if I don’t like Microsoft’s new operating system on the right computer.
After a few weeks of playing with my wife’s Sony T-Series – a $700-or-so touch-screen Windows 8 laptop that, in comparison to my Macbook Pro Retina is a bit whimpy, I can’t help but pick the thing up as my primary go-to machine. It’s easy to use. It makes sense. You poke big buttons to load up things that you want to load. You install things like a Windows machine. You run things like a Windows machine. It’s the same thing, with a skin put over it that actually works, but only if you have a touch screen. On my self-built frankenstein’s monster of a machine, Windows 8 is a deformed, useful screensaver. But on a touchscreen machine like Sony’s (which for $700 surprised me with a very, very high-quality 13.3″ capacitive touch screen), it makes total sense. You slide panels. You slide windows. You combine touches and typing and mouse-clicks as you would a little horrible symphony that makes a sound that’s almost productive.
The truth of the matter is, the world has become so anti-Microsoft that they can’t help but look past Ballmer’s mishaps both ridiculous and egregious.
Windows 8 might actually approach being the future of a desktop operating system, and it sucks that we’re all too proud to admit it. Mac OS is undoubtably powerful, but still lacking in user-friendliness. And I’ll be damned if I didn’t wish I had a capacitive touchscreen on my Macbook Pro Retina.
Gorilla Arm is an utterly silly term – partially because people do not operate with their arms hovering blindly in front of the object that they’re using. When you’re using the TV, do you hover your arm around after you use the remote? Or when you’re reading, do you have your hand hanging upwards, waiting desperately for the next page turn, eager to delve even further into the world of Wizards and Magick? No. I didn’t think so. And it’s folly to apply that logic to a potentially transformative operating system.
If developers back Windows 8, it can and will be a competitive and fundamentally different operating system, one that will update in realtime much like the much-loved Windows Phone 8 – that Sasha Segan thinks the media may deliver infanticide to, and I’m betting the same for Windows 8. Unless, of course, Microsoft sinks some of that money they’re wasting on hiring Jessica Alba and Cam Newton for advertisements and puts it into hiring excellent developers to create interesting, refreshing apps.